Environmental Politics - SO525

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Module delivery information

Location Term Level1 Credits (ECTS)2 Current Convenor3 2020 to 2021
(version 2)
Autumn 6 15 (7.5) DR C Wrenn checkmark-circle


Environmental issues have become central matters of public concern and political contention. In this module we shall consider explanations for the rise and social distribution of environmental concern as well as the forms of organisation that have been adopted to address environmental questions, including the emergence of global environmental issues and the responses to them. The development of environmental protest, environmental movements and Green parties are central concerns, but we shall also consider the ‘greening’ of established political parties and political agenda. Is it realistic to expect the development of a global environmental movement adequate to the task of tackling global environmental problems. The approach is broadly comparative and examples will be taken from Europe (east and west), North America, Australasia and south-east Asia.


This module appears in the following module collections.

Contact hours

11 lectures and 10-11 one-hour seminars

Method of assessment

50% coursework (one 2,000 word essay: one seminar presentation) and 50% 2-hour written examination (summer term)

Indicative reading

Carter N (2nd edn. 2007) The Politics of the Environment. Cambridge UP
Connelly J & Smith G (2012) Politics and the Environment: From Theory to Practice (3rd edition). Routledge
Doyle T (2004) Environmental Movements in Majority and Minority Worlds. Rutgers UP
Doyle T & McEachern D (3rd edn. 2007) Environment and Politics. Routledge
Richardson D & Rootes C (eds) (1995) The Green Challenge: the Development of Green Parties in Europe. Routledge
Rootes C (ed) (1999) Environmental Movements: Local, National and Global. Cass

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

Learning outcomes

Students who successfully complete this module will have an enhanced understanding of:
the varieties of political thinking about the environment;
the emergence and development of Green parties and the greening of the agenda of other parties;
the development of environmental protest and environmental movements;
the changing character of environmental movement organisations;
the political responses to global environmental issues


  1. Credit level 6. Higher level module usually taken in Stage 3 of an undergraduate degree.
  2. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  3. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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